100 lbs ago I could barely walk a block. Today I ran my very first 5k in 36 minutes 15 seconds!!
I did so much better than I thought I would. Guess I was better prepared than I thought. I was 15/31 in my age group & 116/230 overall. Middle of the pack? I love it! I get all giggly just thinking about it.
It was exciting starting with all those people. I didn't expect how much my competitive spirit would kick in & keep me running when I'd probably slowed to a walk if I was alone. The weather was perfect too - overcast and a bit on the chilly side, but no rain.
The only down side to the day was that hubby was called into work & I had to go alone. I wish he'd been there to celebrate with me... and take pictures. I did see people I knew though, including my boss. She did very well - 6th overall & 1st in her age group. Also saw a parent who attends one of the programs I do at work. She's at least 10-15 years younger than me and fairly slender, so I was really surprised that I came in 4 minutes faster than her.
I certainly picked a gorgeous location for my first race - the Dinsosaur Provinical Park in Alberta Canada. I don't have any pictures from race day, but here are a few photos of the park that I found on the internet:
(this is an image from last year's run - gives you an idea of the running surface)
Isn't it incredible? This is the badlands. When you enter the badlands you drive DOWN, not up. Those aren't mountains - rather the earth has eroded around them.
Besides being very cool looking, this is one of the most fossil-rich places in the world. Within the park, there are two fossil sites where they've built the exhibit around the fossils still in the earth - exactly where the dinosaurs died.
I started thinking about way back in April 2010 when I first decided to try running. I went & re-read a few of my old blogs from that time. I was so afraid. Afraid of trying and failing. But I didn't let the fear stop me. The first time I ran (30 seconds jog, 90 seconds walk for 20 minutes) I thought I might die... but I was also elated that I was capable of even that & that feeling kept me going.
This morning I was afraid too. I've gained weight & become less active since I started working 3 months ago. I'm still adjusting to handling it all. So I was NOT confident about this race. I gave myself a pep talk for the whole drive out there: "even if you're last, you're still a winner" "you just have to do your best" "what matters is that you show up".
Once again, I pushed through the fear and guess what? All of those things I told myself are true. Just showing up, doing my best & crossing the finish line make me feel like a winner. That I did better than expected with just the icing on the cake.
I'm going to wear my race t-shirt with pride!